DSL NewsWire: Public Invited to Tour ABT School on the West Coast

A May 2 open house at the American Ballet Theatre William J. Gillespie School at Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa, California, will feature open classes, studio tours, performances, faculty meet and greets, food trucks, and fun.

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DSL NewsWire: New Director, Peter Merz, Sees Growth in Ballet West Academy’s Future

Former professional dancer and ballet educator Peter LeBreton Merz has been hired as the new director of the Frederick Quinney Lawson Ballet West Academy, Salt Lake City, Utah.

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DSL NewsWire: Dance Headliners Support DC Underserved Youth Program

CityDance Dream program; photo courtesy Facebook

Guest artists from BalletX, Charlotte Ballet, Momix, Orlando Ballet, plus Fabrice Calmels of The Joffrey Ballet, and Bad Boys of Dance star Rasta Thomas, will headline a performance that benefits a youth development and arts education program that provides free performances, arts school, and summer camp programs to the Washington DC–region’s most underserved neighborhoods.

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DSL NewsWire: Live DJ Mixes Bach and Beyoncé in New Work by Dwight Rhoden

Dwight Rhoden with Charlotte Ballet; photo by Jeff Hahne

The Charlotte [NC] Ballet’s new work by choreographer Dwight Rhoden has dancers performing to a mix of Bach and Beyoncé thrown down by a live DJ on stage.

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DSL NewsWire: Flint Ballet Students’ Shoe Drive Helps Others and Protects the Environment

Young People’s Ballet Theatre shoe drive; photo by Michelle Farleo

Young People’s Ballet Theatre of Flint, Michigan, is once again holding a shoe collection drive with multiple purposes: to support their mission of dance education in the Flint community, to benefit microenterprise ventures in developing nations, and to keep old shoes out of local landfills.

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DSL NewsWire: Effort Seeks to Help Arts Organizations Grab and Keep 20-Something Audiences

Ballet Austin; photo courtesy Facebook

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Ballet Austin, and Pacific Northwest Ballet, along with 23 symphony orchestras, opera companies, theaters, and other arts-based organizations, will learn how to better grow and sustain their audiences through the New York–based Wallace Foundation’s Building Audiences for Sustainability effort.

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DSL NewsWire: Inspirational Misty Copeland’s Own Motivation Was Nadia Comaneci

Misty Copeland on Time magazine cover; photo courtesy the New York Times

“Like all gymnasts, I’ve done some ballet—it’s a part of our program. And people don’t realize the tremendous amount of time and work you have to put in to do the maneuvers they do. Ballerinas like Misty Copeland look so beautiful and perfect, but it takes thousands of hours of hard work to make it look that easy.”

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DSL NewsWire: New PBT School Annex Expected to Boost Enrollment by 40 Percent

Artist rendering of PBT’s new annex; image courtesy Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre

At a gala marking the final weekend of its 45th mainstage season, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre (PBT) last week announced a $20 million campaign that will expand its PBT School and its presence in the region and the dance community at large.

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DSL NewsWire: Experienced Tutu-Makers in Short Supply

A dancer in full tutu; photo by Darrin Zammit Lupi/Reuters

A shortage of costume makers (stitchers in industry speak; tutu-makers in public parlance) is causing headaches at opera and ballet companies around the world, reported Newsweek.

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DSL NewsWire: New Frankenstein Ballet Amps Down Horror in Favor of Love

Liam Scarlett; photo by Richard Saker

San Francisco Ballet and The Royal Ballet’s co-production of the gothic classic Frankenstein will be choreographed by The Royal Ballet’s artist in residence, Liam Scarlett.

Frankenstein will premiere May 4, 2016 at The Royal Ballet, with SF Ballet presenting the full-length production during its 2017 repertory season.

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DSL NewsWire: From Bows to Band-Aids: NYCB Through Fun Facts and Figures

NYCB logo; courtesy Facebook

To the uninitiated, life at New York City Ballet may seem like a frothy confection of princes, silky pink ribbons, and countless curtain calls, all wrapped in tulle. The reality is quite different: hours of practice, day after day, year after year. Here is a brief chassé through NYCB’s world, with facts and figures presented by T, the New York Times’ style magazine:

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DSL NewsWire: Past and Present of ABT Explored in Live-Streaming Event

ABT’s Alicia Alonso and Igor Youskevitch in George Balanchine’s Theme and Variations (1947); photo courtesy Facebook

A three-part retrospective exploring American Ballet Theatre’s contributions to American dance over the past 75 years will be shared with ballet fans across the country through a special live-streaming event this coming Sunday and Monday.

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DSL NewsWire: Documentary Considers How Professional Ballet Was Kept Alive in Omaha

It Starts with a Step; poster image courtesy Ballet Nebraska

In the midst of wrapping up its fifth successful season, Ballet Nebraska is pausing to take a look back at the abrupt folding of Omaha Theater Ballet in 2010, and the subsequent rise of a new company that would keep professional ballet alive and happening in Omaha.

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DSL NewsWire: Maryland Youth Ballet Looks to Expand Challenged Student Program

Maryland Youth Ballet’s Music and Motion program; photo courtesy Larry Miller

Maryland Youth Ballet in Silver Spring is teaching classical ballet to students with physical disabilities—including some diagnosed with disorders like cerebral palsy and Rett syndrome, which may require wheelchairs and constant care—that some would not expect to see in a dance studio.

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DSL NewsWire: Designers Find Inspiration for Spring Lines in Ballet Class

Ballet-inspired spring fashions; photo courtesy Fox News KMSP

Barre classes—which combine components of ballet, yoga, and Pilates—are the latest exercise trend, and it looks like designers have followed suit. Spring looks included some beautiful nods to dance-inspired style that can be re-created without pointe shoes and leg warmers.

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DSL NewsWire: Dark, Gritty TV Ballet Drama Set to Debut November 8

Flesh and Bone; image courtesy TV Line

Starz’s Flesh and Bone, an eight-part limited series that follows a young dancer with a distinctly troubled past as she joins a prestigious ballet company in New York, will make its debut November 8, according to Deadline.

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DSL NewsWire: Copeland and Mack Make History With Sold-Out Shows of Swan Lake

Misty Copeland and Brooklyn Mack in Swan Lake; photo by Emily Jan/NPR

In a historic move, two African American ballet dancers performed the lead roles in The Washington Ballet’s Swan Lake last week at the Kennedy Center—the first time this has been done in a major ballet company, and challenging the idea of what principal roles in classical ballets should look like.

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DSL NewsWire: Philly Nonprofit Brings Ballet Performances, Training Into Public Schools

Wissahickon Dance Academy students preview Carmen; photo by Lindsay Browning

International Ballet Exchange’s (IBE) Ballet Building Bridges program, which introduces Philadelphia public school students to dance and the performing arts through performances of fully staged story ballets, is now preparing for May performances of Carmen.

IBE, a Philadelphia nonprofit that provides low-income students with classical ballet educational and performance opportunities, has been presenting ballets for Philadelphia School District students since its founding in 1999.

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DSL NewsWire: Corporate Workers Look to Ballet to Counter High Pressure, Stress

Ballet counters corporate stress; photo courtesy Not Always Working

The recent influx of traditional ballet and ballet-based classes, squarely aimed at the busy corporate office worker, seems to say that pure classical ballet technique is the ultimate antidote to a high-pressure, stressful working environment, says the Guardian.

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DSL NewsWire: PNB Dancers’ Photo Series Highlights Interesting Seattle Locales

Pacific Northwest Ballet dancers in a vintage photo shoot for Humans of Ballet; photo by Day Kol

A historic hotel in the heart of Seattle, a forest outside Redmond, Seattle’s EMP Museum: all are settings for Humans of Ballet, an ambitious project that melds the beauty of the human form with interesting and beautiful places, reports King 5 News.

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DSL NewsWire: American Dance Institute to Shutter School; Focus on Presenting Dance

American Dance Institute school; photo courtesy American Dance Institute

American Dance Institute, founded 15 years ago in Rockville, Maryland, plans to spend less time teaching dance and more time supporting dancers and presenting new work—including with a New York season next year, the organization announced Friday.

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DSL NewsWire: OBT Readies New Work by Former Beyoncé and Savion Glover Choreographer

Darrell Grand Moultrie works with Oregon Ballet Theatre; photo by Blaine Truitt Covert

Darrell Grand Moultrie, a Brooklyn-based choreographer who has worked with Beyoncé on her Mrs. Carter Show World Tour two years ago, and with the Tony Award–winning dancer Savion Glover, is now rehearsing Oregon Ballet Theatre (OBT) for a new work.

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DSL NewsWire: New Freestanding Barre Offers Easy Assembly and Custom Lengths

Custom Barres product featured in Fox TV’s Glee; photo courtesy Custom Barres

The new Arabesque barre features fully welded hardware, eliminating the need for connectors and difficult assembly, and no tools are necessary to tighten the base screws. Arabesque barres come in custom lengths from 4 to 16 feet. An adjustable version of Arabesque that can be fitted to either a growing child or an adult’s height will ship later this spring.

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DSL NewsWire: Angel Corella Plans Blockbuster Season for Pennsylvania Ballet

Pennsylvania Ballet in Serenade; photo by Alexander Iziliaev

Justin Peck, Liam Scarlett, Wayne McGregor, Christopher Wheeldon: they’re among the hottest young choreographers in ballet today. And Pennsylvania Ballet will dance their works and more next year in a blockbuster-packed season, artistic director Angel Corella told the Philadelphia Inquirer.

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DSL NewsWire: DTH Exists to Prove That, in Ballet, Color Doesn’t Matter

Dance Theatre of Harlem; photo by Rachel Neville

“Panel after panel convenes to ask why there are not more dancers of color in ballet. My heart sinks every time. Where is Dance Theatre of Harlem in this conversation?” asks DTH artistic director and former professional dancer Virginia Johnson in a column in Huffington Post.

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DSL NewsWire: Series Seeks To Address Lack of Female Ballet Choreographers

Gleish Dances; photo Kelsey Campbell

CounterPointe3, the third edition of an annual curated performance series that features 11 women choreographers making new work en pointe, will run April 10 to 12 in downtown Brooklyn’s The Actors Fund Arts Center.

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DSL NewsWire: Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet’s Closing a Cautionary Tale

Jin Young Lin of Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet; photo by Andrea Mohin/New York Times

With a wealthy patron who loved dance, Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet was the envy of many in New York’s dance world.

But the perils of relying on a single donor became clear this month when Cedar Lake’s founder and benefactor—Nancy Laurie, a Walmart heiress—had a change of heart and announced that she would close the company after performances in June at the Brooklyn Academy of Music.

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DSL NewsWire: Stellar Performances Mark Competition for Erik Bruhn Prize

Hannah Fischer; photo by Bruce Zinger

The National Ballet of Canada’s Hannah Fischer and Carlo Di Lanno of San Francisco Ballet were winners at The Eleventh International Competition for The Erik Bruhn Prize, held Tuesday night at Toronto’s Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, according to CBC News.

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DSL NewsWire: David Hallberg Presents Ballet Companies That Influenced Him

David Hallberg; photo courtesy David H. Koch Theater

David Hallberg will introduce top international ballet companies and share an insider’s perspective on the works and the institutions that have left an indelible impression on him as an artist during “David Hallberg Presents: Legacy,” to be presented in association with the Youth America Grand Prix, April 17 at 7pm at the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center, New York City.

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DSL NewsWire: Bolshoi’s Galina Petrova, Who Danced in the ’30s, Dies at Age 101

Former principal ballet dancer of the Bolshoi Theater, choreography teacher, and merited artist of the Russian Federation, Galina Petrova, died in Moscow last week. She was 101, the press service of the Bolshoi Theater reported in Tass.

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DSL NewsWire: Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet Announces Closure

Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet; photo by Andrea Mohin/New York Times

“We are sad to announce the closing of Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet,” the company announced on its website. “It has been our honor to work with some of the best dancers and choreographers in the world and we thank all of our valued employees who helped create many inspirational productions over the years.” It was not immediately clear what led to the decision to close.

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DSL NewsWire: Ric Burns’ Documentary American Masters: American Ballet Theatre Screens March 23

American Masters: ABT; photo courtesy PBS

The Kennedy Center Millennium Stage hosts the world premiere screening of American Masters: American Ballet Theatre on Monday, March 23 at 6pm in the Terrace Theater at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC.

American Masters: American Ballet Theatre, a feature-length documentary produced and directed by award-winning filmmaker Ric Burns, celebrates ABT’s legacy through rehearsal footage, performances, and interviews with key figures from the company’s rich history.

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DSL NewsWire: Bolshoi Ballet Coming to Movie Theaters

Svetlana Zakharova in Lady of the Camellias; photo by Svetlana Fetisova, courtesy Bolshoi Ballet

The 2015–16 season of “Bolshoi Ballet in Cinema,” presented by Pathé Live and BY Experience, will show seven full-length ballets—three prerecorded (so the casts are known) and four shown live or on the day of performance—in some 450 spots across the United States and Canada, reports the New York Times ArtsBeat.

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DSL NewsWire: Precious Puppies Help to Ease Job Stress at American Ballet Theatre

ABT’s Lauren Post and Pickles; photo courtesy Instagram

Ballet dancers have a tough life: so how about a softer, cuddlier look at the dance life, thanks to Instagram.

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DSL NewsWire: Supporters Speak Out with Checkbooks, Save Financially-Strapped Ballet San Jose

Ballet San Jose dancers Jing Zhang, Amy Marie Briones, and Ommi Pipit-Suksun; photo courtesy Facebook

California’s Ballet San Jose Silicon Valley successfully overshot its do-or-die fundraising goal over the weekend by almost $100,000, reported the Contra Costa Times.

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DSL NewsWire: Online Resource Offers Ballet Curriculums, Lesson Plans, Music

The Ballet Source; photo courtesy Facebook

The Ballet Source is an online resource for teachers of ballet with students from age 3 through the high school years based on the “Ballet Arts for Young Children” curriculum written and developed by the late Ruth H. Brinkerhoff, former director of the Utah Ballet Academy.

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DSL NewsWire: Choreographer and Students Discover Limitations Can Spur Creativity

“Ten Tiny Dances;” photo courtesy Kali Raisl

“Ten Tiny Dances,” a Tacoma, Washington, dance event that raises funds for scholarships at Tacoma City Ballet, sets a challenge for choreographers and dancers: to fit expressive movement into short works on a 4-by-4-foot stage set squarely in the middle of an audience.

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DSL NewsWire: Master Pointe Shoe Fitter Shares Her Knowledge on YouTube Channel

Mary Carpenter and DancewithmaryNYC; photo courtesy Mary Carpenter

When Mary Carpenter started work at a small Repetto boutique in New York City in order to get a discount on dancewear, little did she know that that job would guide her to a flourishing career as a professional pointe shoe fitter and, most recently, producer of her own YouTube channel, DancewithmaryNYC, geared to “all things pointe shoes.”

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DSL NewsWire: William Forsythe Discusses His Ballets in Live-Streamed PNB Event

PNB dancers Elizabeth Murphy and Jerome Tisserand; photo courtesy Facebook

A special lecture-demonstration at Pacific Northwest Ballet led by legendary choreographer William Forsythe will be streamed live tonight (Wednesday, March 11) on the eve of the first American program devoted entirely to his work.

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DSL NewsWire: Brazilian Ballet Class Shields Poverty-Stricken Children from Crime

Ballet in Paraisopolis, Brazil; photo courtesy Fox News

It is 10am and classical music is playing in the Paraisopolis “favela,” the second-largest shantytown in São Paulo, Brazil. Twenty children have already been practicing for an hour under a stern ballet instructor. The dance class is, in fact, also an effort to fight crime.

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DSL NewsWire: Richmond Ballet Turns to Heavy Metal Front Man for Latest Score

Randy Blythe of Lamb of God; photo by Christie Goodwin/Redferns/Getty

It’s not often that the lead singer of a heavy metal band that Rolling Stone described as “too brutal for thrash” would provide the score for a ballet, but Lamb of God front man Randy Blythe is defying expectations by contributing music to a friend’s dance project.

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DSL NewsWire: Struggling Ballet San Jose Launches Emergency Fundraising Drive

Ballet San Jose; photo by Alejandro Gomez

Financially troubled Ballet San Jose Silicon Valley has to raise $550,000 by March 14 or face its possible swan song, reported the San Jose Mercury News.

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DSL NewsWire: David Hallberg To Miss Spring ABT Season Due to Injury

David Hallberg; photo by Gene Schiavone

David Hallberg, the American Ballet Theatre principal dancer, is injured and will not perform during the company’s Metropolitan Opera House season, reported the New York Times ArtsBeat.

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DSL NewsWire: Edward Villella’s Choreography Featured in Televised Ice Show

Meryl Davis and Charlie White; photo courtesy Shall We Dance On Ice

Miami Ballet founder and former New York City Ballet principal Edward Villella is also an accomplished choreographer for ice skaters. One of his pieces, “The Three Smokers,” will be featured during ABC-TV’s Shall We Dance On Ice, airing March 7 at 4pm EST.

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DSL NewsWire: Backstage Drama at ABT as Head Carpenter Claims Wrongful Firing

Frank La Mantia; photo by James Estrin/New York Times

Frank La Mantia worked backstage for more than two decades at American Ballet Theatre, earning one promotion after another despite his famously hot temper. In the process, he became the head carpenter and the company became his home away from home, the place where he found some of his closest friends and his sense of identity. But today, La Mantia and ABT are at war, according to the New York Times. La Mantia has lost his job, and the bitter dispute over his firing has landed one of the city’s most acclaimed cultural institutions in court.

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March-April 2015 | 2 Tips for Ballet Teachers | Finger Turns

Photo by Becky Montalvo

For successful finger turns, it’s important for the female partner to ronde de jambe her working leg a full 90 degrees, from devant to à la seconde, before pulling it back into a turned-out passé.

As pairs practice, have them work together to find equal opposing force between the female dancer’s supporting arm and the male dancer’s push-off arm.

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DSL NewsWire: NYCB’s Art Series Fills Seats with Younger (Hipper) Audience Members

There seemed to be an explosion of young men in knit caps and young women in leather pants watching as New York City Ballet recently performed a trio of Balanchine classics. In fact, according to the New York Times, the average age in the David H. Koch Theater seemed to have dropped by years, if not decades.

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DSL NewsWire: Website Assists New Professional Dancers by Comparing Pay, Conditions

A website comparing dancers’ pay and conditions across the world has been launched to inform young dancers starting their careers, according to The Stage.

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DSL NewsWire: South Carolina Artists Follows Collaborative Example of Ballets Russes

What do you get when you combine a driven, neoclassical choreographer with a business-savvy impresaria and an Irish feminist composer? You get the newly formed Ballet Evolution, a collective of artists led by choreographer Jonathan Tabbert, Chamber Music Charleston director Sandra Nikolajevs, and composer and performer Laura Ball.

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DSL NewsWire: Creator of Company That Honors All Body Shapes and Sizes Retires from Stage

Maria Caruso has made her mark on the Pittsburgh dance scene by telling other people’s stories through her medical-themed ballets performed by her company, Bodiography Contemporary Ballet.

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